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  • Writer's pictureNancy H. Cummings

Articulating Your Company's Core Values: The Foundation of Your Culture

Earlier this week, we touched on mission and vision statements. Articulating both of these in a simple, compelling way begins to guide and influence your company’s culture. We all know stories of companies that have experienced challenges and wild successes in living out their cultures. So, how do you have wild success in living out your company culture?

After defining your mission and vision statements, your best next step is to determine your company’s core values. Core values are the deeply ingrained principles that guide all of your company’s actions and decisions. They serve as the heartbeat of the company; its cultural foundation. Core values are what makes a company unique and stands our from competitors. Often in today’s workplace, people choose to work for certain companies because they align with the company's core values. 

Before you do anything, though, you need to know this. Core values can never be compromised. For any reason at any time. They must be honored and cherished at all cost.

Also, your company’s core values need to be authentic. They need to translate into the way everyone does their work. It’s as if core values provide a blueprint for how every employee should behave. At all times. 

Core values should be integrated into everything. From every employee related process to every customer-facing process to every branding and marketing decision that is made to every celebration. It should be very obvious that the core values inform and drive every decision that your company makes. Interview questions should tap into a candidates ability to fit within the core values. Performance assessments should identify how well employees live the core values. To help ensure that this happens, promote your core values as often as possible. Say them in meetings, write them on memos, place them in email signatures, paint them on the wall, print them on t-shirts, share them across social platforms, and even logo them on coffee mugs. 

Deciding on your company’s core values should not be taken lightly. And, it should not be rushed. Taking time to understand how the new core values will play out daily in different situations will serve leaders well. The impact should be intentionally considered across the team and in multiple circumstances. Some say that well-intentioned core values are similar to a fine wine; never rushed and always well worth the wait. 

It is not easy to create and implement a solid company culture. Your mission, vision and core values all need to align. Your team needs to believe them and live them out. Every single day. Once you have done this, your company’s culture will become an asset and you will experience wild success. 

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